David Turner’s Fevered Imaginings of the West

A commenter on David Turner’s article mentioned in my previous article “The Media Drumbeat: The West is Evil“) writes:

So the majority looking to protect its ethnic interests by retaining the ethnic status quo is bad? What about the Dalai Lama, the Japanese or indeed even Israel? Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday that the recent “flood of illegal workers infiltrating from Africa” into Israel was “a concrete threat to the Jewish and democratic character of the country.” Don’t you need to acknowledge that this is normal group behavior and part of human psychology

Nice comment!

Turner replies:

Since your comment is so general I’m not certain of your point? Surely its not that if Christendom sees the Jewish Problem essential to its interests then it is justified in annihilating  the Jewish people? Because that, in effect, was the near result of the the Final Solution, and the US using the 1924 Act (clearly intended as preemptive ethnic cleansing) to force Jews to remain available for Auschwitz?

The commenter replies:

Was it intended as pre-emptive ethnic cleansing? I wasn’t aware of any suggestion of deporting or removing groups in the US? My comment was that it seems there is a double standard here? If it’s bad for one group to [advance] its ethnic interests by retaining the ethnic status quo,  does that apply for all groups? Take the quotation ““Upon signing the Act, President Calvin Coolidge commented, ‘America must remain American.’ This phrase would become the rallying cry of anti-immigration sentiment until after World War II.” If that is wrong, then what is your view on countries like Japan, or even Netanyahu’s comment…

Well said. In Turner’s fevered mind, the concept that other people have ethnic interests is completely incomprehensible. Not only that, the American desire to retain the ethnic status quo becomes a justification for killing all Jews even though no legislator ever mentioned killing Jews in the Congressional debates, and even though no Jews were ever killed or even deported. The idea that the law was “preemptive ethnic cleansing” is completely bonkers—as if American legislators in 1924 could predict what would happen in Europe in the 1930s and 1940s.

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Turner did not make further replies to this commenter, apparently feeling no need to explain how Israel’s attitudes toward immigration can be squared with his indictment of the U.S.

The fact is that Jewish collective memory of the 1924 law is an important component of the hostility of American Jews to the traditional people and culture of America. When Stephen Steinlight sought to change the attitudes of American Jews to be more open to immigration restriction (because he feared Muslim immigration), he necessarily condemned the 1924 law:

[Steinlight's] animosity toward the restrictionism of 1924-1965 shines through clearly. This ‘pause’ in immigration is perceived as a moral catastrophe. He describes it as ‘evil, xenophobic, anti-Semitic,’ ‘vilely discriminatory,’ a ‘vast moral failure,’ a ‘monstrous policy.’ Jewish interests are his only consideration, while the vast majority of pre-1965 Americans are described as a ‘thoughtless mob’ because they advocate a complete moratorium on immigration.

It seems fair to state that there is a communal Jewish memory about the period of immigration restriction as the high point of American anti-Jewish attitudes. Non-Jews have a difficult time fathoming Jewish communal memory. For strongly identified Jews, the ‘vilely discriminatory’ actions of immigration restrictionists are part of the lachrymose history of the Jewish people. Immigration restriction from 1924-1965 is in the same category as the Roman destruction of the Temple in 70 A.D., the marauding Crusaders of the Middle Ages, the horrors of the Inquisition, the evil of the Russian Czar, and the rationally incomprehensible calamity of Nazism. These events are not just images drawn from the dustbin of history. They are deeply felt images and potent motivators of contemporary behavior. As Michael Walzer (1994, 4) noted, ‘I was taught Jewish history as a long tale of exile and persecution — Holocaust history read backwards.’ From this perspective, the immigration restriction of 1924-1965 is an important part of the Holocaust because it prevented the emigration of Jews who ultimately died in the Holocaust — a point that Steinlight dwells on at length. (See here, p. 6)

And as Walter Benjamin (1968, 262) notes, ‘Hatred and [the] spirit of sacrifice … are nourished by the image of enslaved ancestors rather than that of liberated grandchildren.’

David Turner is clearly of this mindset. Again, it wouldn’t matter if there were a few Jews who felt this way and screamed out their hatred toward the people and culture of the West at the top of their lungs while alone in a closet or staring at the walls of their apartment. But these attitudes are entirely mainstream and permeate the elite media and departments of history and Jewish Studies at elite universities. They are therefore a critical component of the assault on the West being carried out via displacement-level non-White immigration in all Western countries and the destruction of cultural confidence among people of European descent throughout the West.

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  1. on February 1, 2013 at 2:58 pm

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